1979 Camaro Z-28 Restoration


New member
Hello and thank you for allowing me to join your paint forum. I am a fairly good mechanic but a novice and student to body and paint. My project is a 79 Z-28 and have stripped the car down and have removed the front sub-frame.I have been self teaching thru you tube the body work.At this point in time Im currently prepping for spraying the 2k urethane primer/surfacer high build colored primer (yellow).Im about a week away and have a friend that will spray the primer and teach me as we go. Ive been pre planning the paint job. And this is the direction Ive decided to go .After watching many of the videos done by Kevin Tetz (Eastman) while doing the Zed-Sled (Camaro) Ive read a piece he wrote noting the following: Single Stage paint using Clear Coat over it. Spray your single stage color (GM code 52 sunflower yellow) next mix together a (individually premixed) of 50% color and 50% clear then 25% color and 75% clear and lastly a few coats of 100% clear. Now my twist is I want to add some .004 gold flakes to my paint job. The instructions call for 2 tablespoons of flake per 1 quart of clear. Im not wanting the flakes to be so dense that it would block out my color (yellow). So Im guessing, to have a moderate flake showing, maybe 1-1.5 tablespoons per qt. ?? And when should I add the flakes to the clear at the 25% color/75% clear coat phase? and then spray 2 coats of 100% clear ? Im looking for some informative reply's.


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Kevin is very knowledgeable and gives great advice.
Whenever you do anything out of the norm like this, I always do a spray out to test how it's going to look. That way you can dial in how much flake to add to the clear for the effect you want. It will also show you what the final product will look like, and see if it's pleasing to the eye. Personally I think the gold over yellow might not look as good as it sounds. But that is personal choice, too. Just be sure you use the same gun and technique to do the spray outs, as you will use on the car. Pressure, gun type, distance all make a difference with doing custom painting. if the gold is too overpowering, you could mix in into the last couple coats of color mix, instead of the color/clear.
Just from my experience, if the gold metallic is too much, try gold pearl, a much softer, subtler look. But do the pearl over the color, under the final clear. Use a basecoat type clear, like a jam-in or intercoat clear to mix the pearl in.
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New member
Went to Paint with Pearl Webb site. These Metallic Paint Candy Pearls do they have metal flake in them ? And how do these pearls work with the base coat color. Im using 1971 Camaro Sunflower yellow code 52 as my base coat and dont want it to look like everyone else's.


OK, we're talking aobut totally different kinds of paint here. Maybe the Paint with Pearl website is a bit confusing for beginners, I haven't seen it.
Metallics: very small silver metallic particles mixed in the color. Used by OEMs for many years.
Pearls: colored mica flakes, 2 varieties. First is pure color mica, when painted over a white base will give you the desired color, with a softer glow than metallic. The other variety is also called flip flop, or interference pearl. It is mostly clear, but will reflect a color when light hits it at the right angle. Does not change the color of the paint under it.
Candy: a color tinted, transparent paint, shot over a metallic, pearl or straight color base. Gives a deep finish, you can always see the flake under it, but very difficult to apply correctly.
Metalflake: Larger version of metallics, available in a variety of colors, and sizes of flake.

You can apply any type of metallic, flake, or pearl over a base color. Al, except the interference pearl, will be very visible, and can change the color of the basecoats, esp. if applied heavily. All can also be mixed in with basecoat, for a much more subtle effect. More would be used, of course, if mixed with color.
The paint I was describing would be to put a light coat of gold interference pearl over the yellow paint. I've done it before, and it's a nice look. The gold metallic over the yellow would be more pronounced, and IMHO, look a bit like dirt or dust in the finish, until the light reflects off of the metallics.


New member
Hey Kevin, Ive located the gold interference standard pearl pigment 10-40 micron 2 oz size. So when you said a light coat,about how much pigment to a quart of clear would you suggest I mix to achieve the light coat ?
If your familiar with camaro sunflower yellow code 52 that will be the base coat I will be putting this over. When you did this what was the name of the yellow used ?
Thanks !


Staff member
Looks like it's going to be a sharp Camaro.

Like ChopOlds said you have to be very careful with putting a 'flake' over the yellow. It does sound good on paper, but once it's on, you have to consider different lighting conditions.
In sunlight, of course you'll get that sparkle, but in the shade flake normally is just 'there'. Over some colors, it may even look like dirt specs.

A pearl coat won't have as much sparkle in the sun, but will look good in both sun and shade.
You'll also need to control the amount applied as well. Too much and it will make the yellow look too milky.

No matter what you choose, it needs to be applied over the yellow base.

I personally like the look of a brighter solid color whether it's an orange, lime green, yellow with today's bigger pearls (I call them glorified pearls) sprayed over the color.
This will not make the color look milky, has a great amount of sparkle in the sunlight but yet still looks like the base color in the shade.
I do motorcycles so I see these ALL the time.
I also know the Dodge Chargers and Challengers have these on some of the colors but they don't put as much as Harley-Davidson does on their colors.
Harley even had a yellow that had these over them. I believe it was called Chrome Yellow (they actually had 2 of them. The earlier years did not have the sparkles).

Also, PPG had some color swatches called "Liquid Crystals" that had a yellow included.
Here is a sample I found
Keep in mind, when you look at any of the above colors I mentioned, don't look at the actual color, look at the sparkle effect as these can be applied over any yellow (or any color for that matter). In your case over the code 52 yellow.

As far as the 'mix'. Like ChopOlds said, it's up to spray technique. There are too many variables to give an exact ratio

Be sure and do test panels to make sure you get the effect you want.


New member
What you are thinking about doing is called a tri-coat. Color coat, effects coat, and clear coat. They are more difficult than a single color. But when done right they look fantastic. A lot of newer cars are coming with tri-stage from the factory.

Test panels are a must to dial in the mix needed for the effect you want. I would also suggest getting an old hood, trunk, or similarly large panel and work out your technique before shooting the whole car. It is easy to screw up a tri-coats job... miss judge your overlap and get stripes, slow down on a curved area and get heavier effect, move faster on another section and get less effect... you get the idea.